Stephen Kingsley nears contract deal with Hearts as Jambos prepares to tie up defenders amid John Souttar speculation

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Hearts is said to be close to making a deal with Stephen Kingsley on a new deal.

Craig Halkett has pledged his future to Tynecastle after signing a new two-and-a-half-year contract yesterday.

And now the Daily Express reports that Kingsley is about to follow suit.

The news would be another boost for Jambos after skipper Craig Gordon also extended his stay on Gorgie ahead of Halkett on Hogmanay.

Until then, Robbie Neilson’s entire Hearts defense was due to leave this summer.

In addition to Gordon and Halkett, Kingsley and John Souttar’s contracts were both set to expire in May.

Michael Smith must play a number of games to activate an automatic one-year extension, while the respective loans of Taylor Moore and Alex Cochrane from Bristol City and Brighton come to an end at the end of the campaign.

Souttar will not sign a new deal and the Scotland defender is expected to choose between Rangers. Blackburn Rovers and Nottingham Forest over the next few days.

But Kingsley is expected to follow Gordon and Halkett’s lead and stick around for next season and beyond.

The former Hull City and Swansea man has arguably been Neilson’s best signing since returning to Tynecastle for a second spell.

After injury issues ruined his time at Humberside, Falkirk’s ex-youngster reunited with Neilson for a one-year contract as the Jambos won the championship and returned to the top flight.

This was quickly extended after Kingsley shone on the left side of the defense, becoming a valuable source of goals with his precise free kicks.

Now present at center-left, he appears to be the last to put pen to paper, which would make it three out of four for Hearts.

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